Rain washes out first day’s play

Chester-le-Street, June 15:

The fourth and final Test between England and West Indies was abandoned without a ball being bowled because of rain at the Riverside today.

Umpires Billy Bowden of New Zealand and Aleem Dar of Pakistan called the game off for the day following an inspection at 12.30pm local time (1130GMT).

Heavy rain Friday morning meant the pitch and square were all fully covered, with the toss not taking place as players waited in the pavilion. The match is now set to resume on Saturday.

England have already won the series, going 2-0 up with one to play after their 60-run win in the third Test at Old Trafford completed on Monday. West Indies have won just two of their last 38 Tests.

Gayle to lead West Indies

CHESTER-LE-STREET: Chris Gayle will captain West Indies in their forthcoming Twenty20 matches and one-dayers against England, with stand-in Test skipper Daren Ganga omitted from the 14-man squad. Also leaving are Corey Collymore, Jerome Taylor and Sylvester Joseph. Lendl Simmons and Dwayne Smith will join the squad along with rookie Austin Richards, a 23-year-old left-handed batsman. West Indies will play England in back-to-back Twenty20 matches at The Oval on June 28 and June 29 before facing the hosts in three ODIs in the first week of July. They then go to Ireland where they will feature in a four-nation tournament also including Scotland and the Netherlands. — AFP